School of Medicine
University of Patras
>University of Patras
Undergraduate Courses


Semester 4th ()

Code MED_411

Hours Teaching 4 hours, Laboratory 3 hours, Tutorial 0 hours , Clinical Training 0 hours (per week)




Neuron Structure, Glia, Neural Tissue Organization
Structure and Functional Topography of the Central Nervous System: Spinal Cord, Medulla, Pons, Cerebellum, Midbrain, Diencephalon, Cerebral hemispheres. Meninges.
Organization of the Nervous System in Longitudinal Systems and Horizontal Levels.
Diagnosis of Neurological Diseases: Anatomical Localization.

Fetal Development (Neural tube, Neural crests, Mechanisms of formation of synapses, The role of the microenvironment in the development of the nervous system).
Metafetal development

Sensory Systems
Sensory modalities, Sensory receptors, Sensory fibers and paths
Sensory Pathways and Sensory Processing: Somatic sensory system, Pain, Temperature, Non-conscious Sensation (Spino-cerebellar tructs), Vision, The auditory system, The vestibular system, The chemical senses (olfaction and taste), Special Visceral Sensitivity.
Motor Systems
Lower Motor Neurons and Muscles, Reflexes, Muscle Tone, Lower motoneuron Damage and Regeneration.
Pyramid (Limbo), Indirect Floating Cavity Root and control of voluntary movements
Symptoms of Upper Kinetic Neuron Damage
Basic Ganglia (Structure and Connections, Kinetic System Control Circuits, Basic Ganglion Disease)
Cerebellum (Subunits, Feeding and Abduction Fibers, Control Systems of the Kinetic System, Cerebellar Functions and Symptoms in Diseases)
Ophthalmologic System (Eye Movements and Muscles, Control of Eye Movements, Cortical Control of Eye Movements)

  • Regulation of Internal Environment

Functional Anatomy

Sympathetic and Parasympathetic Systems

Clinical Implications

  • Consciousness

Functional Anatomy

Clinical Implications

  • Ventricular System of the Brain & Cerebrospinal Fluid System

  • Vascular System of the Brain (Cerebral Blood Flow and Blood-Brain Barrier, Arterial and Vanous System, Clinical Implications)


  • The Peripheral Level

Repetition of educational objectives included in matter of Anatomy I.

  • The Spinal Level

Anatomy and Functions of Spinal Cord

Spinal Reflexes

Clinical Implications

  • The Posterior Fossa (Subtentorial) Level

Anatomy and Functions of Brainstem

Brain Stem & Cranial Nerve Nuclei

Anatomy and Function of Cerebellum

Auditory and Vestibular Systems

Clinical Implications

  • Supratentorial Level

Thalamus, Hypothalamus

Visual System

Telencephalon (Organization, Connections and Functions of Cerebral Cortex)

Structures and Functions of the Limbic System, Clinical Implications)


A General View of the Nervous System. A brief Historical Overview of the Nervous System Study.

Physiological Function of Nerve Cells

Membrane potential, excitability, mechanisms of action potential conduction. Clinical estimation of action potential conduction velocity in a peripheral nerve. Multiple sclerosis.

Synaptic Transmission

Structure and physiology of electrical and chemical synaptic transmission: processes and mechanisms, functional properties.

Neuromuscular synaptic transmission: An analysis of processes and properties. Toxins and pharmaceutical substances of neuromuscular junction. Myasthenia gravis.

Properties of synaptic transmission in the central nervous system, neurotransmitters and neurotransmitter receptors. Fast and slow synaptic transmission. Functional characteristics of the various neurotransmitter systems in the central nervous system. Plasticity of synaptic transmission.

Principles of Sensory System Organization

Sensory modalities and sensory systems. Sensory stimuli and sensory receptors. Sensation and Perception.

Structure and physiological properties of sensory receptors.

Receptive field. Mechanisms of sensory transduction. Receptor adaptation: mechanisms and functions.

The somatic Sensory System

Structure and function of sensory receptors in the somatic sensory system.

Pain physiology: nociceptors and the transduction of painful stimuli, referred pain, peripheral and central mechanisms of hyperalgesia, central mechanism of pain regulation.

Specific Sensory Systems

The chemical senses (taste and smell), the eye and the visual perception, the hearing, encoding sound intensity and frequency, sound localization.

Spinal control of movement

Proprioception from muscle spindles and Golgi tendon organs.

The myotatic reflex.

Gamma motor neurons: connections and functional roles.

Other spinal cord reflexes.

The roles of interneurons.

Brain control of movement

Neuronal networks of supraspinal motor control. Basal ganglia and cerebellum.

Physiology of ascending activating system

Levels of awareness and electroencephalogram. Sleep: stages, neural mechanism, putative functions and disturbances.

Emotion & Motivation

Structures, Mechanisms and Functions.

Learning and Memory

Categories and cellular mechanisms: long-term synaptic plasticity.

Lateralization of Brain Function


The lesson is the basic educational activity for students to know the anatomical and functional organization of the nervous system. Students are introduced to the importance of the nervous system. The principles of physiological organization of the nervous system are described and discussed to create the intellectual background for understanding and understanding of major dysfunctions including simple disorders of mobility and sensation, and more complex disorders such as aphasia, amnesia and agnosia.

The course is organized in two parallel but intersecting axes consisting of the study of the anatomical organization and physiology of the nervous system, i.e. in neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, respectively. In general, the subject matter of the course is organized in such a way that students are gradually introduced into the concepts of structural structure and physiology of the neuronal cell (neuron), the functional specialization of neurons (e.g. sensory, motor), the functional organization of simple neural networks (e.g. spinal cord networks) up to the analysis of complex functions such as the various systems of sensorial information analysis, the organization of motor activity, the regulation of the internal environment, the various levels of alertness and the learning/memory. These functions are based on and require the activity of extensive neural networks. These lessons are given in conjunction with the detailed examination of the topography of the different parts and structures of the central nervous system. The teaching includes the basic principles of fetal and post-fetal development of the nervous system as well as its vascularization system and the production and functioning of the cerebrospinal fluid.

With the laboratory and tutorial exercises the students are trained in the anatomical recognition of the structures of the nervous system and theoretically in the analysis of pathological situations with presentation of selected clinical problems and syndromes. These activities are aiming at developing the capacity of the students to identify the kind and the anatomical localization of the underlying pathology based on symptoms and specific clinical measurements.

Upon successful completion of this course the students will acquire new knowledge and specific skills on the following subjects:

• The basic elements of functional organization of the neurons (nerve cells).
• The basic mechanisms and roles of membrane electrical activity of neurons.
• The mechanisms, the role and the regulation of chemical and electrical synaptic transmission.
• Recognize the general anatomical organization of the nervous system as well as the topography of various parts of the central nervous system.
• The basic principles governing the development of the nervous system.
• The mode of vascularization of the central nervous system and cerebrospinal fluid function.
• The principles of anatomical organization of sensory and motor systems.
• The principles of different levels of functional organization of sensory and motor systems.
• The methods used to identify the species and the anatomical localization of the pathology of the nervous system.

Reading Material

  • MAYO CLINIC, ΙΑΤΡΙΚΕΣ ΝΕΥΡΟΕΠΙΣΤΗΜΕΣ, BENARROCH et al., 1η Ελληνική έκδοση, Γκότσης 2015.

  • Κλινική Νευροανατομία, Waxman St., 2013

  • BERNE AND LEVY, Φυσιολογία, KOEPPEN, STANTON, 2012

  • Έννοιες στην Επιστήμη της Μνήμης, Παπαθεοδωρόπουλος Κ., Αθήνα: Σύνδεσμος Ελληνικών Ακαδημαϊκών Βιβλιοθηκών.

  • Kesner R.P. and Martinez J.L., Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, Elsevier, 2007.